Accessibility Homepage Skip navigation Sitemap


Register and log in to gain access to our forums and chat about everything 'hedgehog'!

Thank you for looking to contribute to the Hedgehog Street forum. Please note that when submitting replies or posts, these are run through our spam-checkers, so there may be a slight delay in your posts appearing, and reflecting in the forum post details below. However, if you think anything has gone awry please contact us.

The views and opinions expressed in this forum do not necessarily represent the views of PTES or BHPS.

Dead Hedgehog in House

Home Forums Hedgehog signs and sightings Dead Hedgehog in House

Viewing 10 posts - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)
  • Author
  • #36870

    Finally cleaned out the house today; amongst the nest of grasses, leaves was a dead hog. (I tried cleaning about a month ago, but lifting the bedding saw there was a resident still, so just replaced it gently.) I don’t know now if it was alive or dead at that point.
    I am devastated. I horribly suspect that I might have (in ignorance) caused it’s death ๐Ÿ™ The house was bought off eBay; plywood with entrance tunnel. I very much fear it died from lack of ventilation. So sad – I was trying to help but so guilty if a cheap house was the cause of death.
    Will look at natural nests, brick built or quality wooden house for the future, but for now RIP hoggie.

    Avatar photo

    Hi Celeste

    So sorry to hear about the poor hog – it must have been a horrible shock for you to find it.

    Very sadly, hibernation is one of the most dangerous (natural) times for hogs and some of them do not survive. They have to get the levels of the two different fats just right to firstly keep them ticking over during hibernation and secondly to enable them to arouse themselves from hibernation, possibly several times. Added to that is that some of them will be older hogs and potentially die for that reason.

    So I think it’s unlikely that it was anything to do with the box. And don’t forget – the hog chose the box, so must have thought it was suitable. The tunnel should have provided sufficient ventilation.

    During hibernation the hog’s natural processes slow right down. Quote from ‘Hedgehogs’ by Pat Morris: “…..The heart rate slows to less then 20 beats a minute, respiration almost stops altogether and up to an hour may elapse between short bursts of breathing. …”

    So don’t beat yourself up too much – I am sure that you have been trying your very best for the hogs and I suspect haven’t done anything which is harmful. It’s easy to blame ourselves, but the truth is that some hogs will die whatever we do or don’t do.

    But yes, RIP hoggie – always very sad. But I’m sure you will continue to your best for all the other hogs which come your way. I hope you are able to continue enjoying their visits.

    p.s. Don’t forget to enter the poor hog onto the Big Hedgehog Map. I always think that it’s a way of remembering them and making sure that their life can make a difference to other hogs. You might also be interested in this


    Thank you Nic for your kind words and reassurance. Every creature has a lifespan, I know we can’t play God to the natural world.
    In my ignorance I assumed the entrance tunnel would provide ventilation. But both farther back the tunnel and the rest chamber itself were pretty well packed. Some straw that I had left nearby but also lots of leaves (I never clear them in the Autumn) so little hedgehog had made a lovely nest.
    I did wonder if it was a late born hoglet, it was not a chunky specimen and there was still a hedgehog feeding beyond Christmas.
    It was upsetting to find. I was so thrilled to discover the visitors to my garden in the first lockdown, since then have tried to support them. They give me so pleasure; they are characterful, fascinating wild creatures so will continue to try and help them.
    I have already logged the sadly dead hedgehog on the map, but thank you for the link – will go there next.
    Again thank you for your support.


    I have logged the details of finding the dead hedgehog for this study as Nic suggested. Hopefully they will gather data over a wide area and this research will help to protect the precious hedgehog population we still have.
    On a lighter note; the night before I discovered the sadly dead hog, there was a tremendous caterwauling (hedgiewauling?) in the wee small hours. What a racket!!! Was it Romeo and Juliet? Casanova and the tart who lurks under the crab apple tree? Who remembers the old joke? ‘How do hedgehogs mate? – with great care!’
    I am still so sad at the loss of the precious hog but hopefully there may be new life in my garden soon.


    Just a quick update. Was still feeling sad at the loss of a hog, so sat out in the peace of the garden yesterday as the light was fading. Between 9.10pm and 10pm I saw nine hedgehogs. Nine! Could have been the same ones coming in the back then out front, then round again but they would have to have been the Usain Bolt of the hog world! ๐Ÿ™‚ Two together trying to feed, bit of pushy shovy going on but Alpha male won of course. Lost one hog but life goes on.

    Avatar photo

    Hi Celeste

    That’s great news that you have lots of hogs visiting – a definite hog seal of approval for what you’re doing to help them!


    I too have found 2 dead hedgehogs in the hibernating box when I cleaned it today. To be honest I was shocked and saddened. I kept thinking โ€˜ What did I do wrong??โ€™ Iโ€™ve not had this problem before, but I guess itโ€™s a number of factors. I did feed them (in a separate station) all through the winter months and I have been doing for last 3 years.



    Oh bless Kassie! As you see from my posts, I too found it so heart-rending to discover a dead hog. And I know my immediate thoughts like yours were ‘what did I do wrong?’
    Please read Nic’s informative and supportive reply in this thread; much about the dangers of hibernation etc.
    I know the sadness can be quite overwhelming but be proud you have supported your hedgehogs.
    I was surprised you had two hedgehogs in the box – perhaps someone wiser than me might know why they chose to hibernate together? Were they late born siblings if they feeding through the winter?
    Whatever, just wanted to send a message of support and understanding.
    Celeste x


    Also gutted that I’ve discovered 2 dead hogs in one of the boxes today, sadly a larger and smaller hog, i thought there was only one but in with all the bedding materials that had been dragged in by hog I found another. I’m also feeding for yrs and I was concerned that I haven’t seen the calling card poop on my patio. I had a cry I’m so sad and feel responsible. ๐Ÿ™


    Oh Moot – please don’t feel responsible! (and I know from bitter experience how shocking and awful it is to discover a death.) I was so saddened at the loss of one, so to find two in the house must really have knocked you back.
    Please refer to Nic’s very informative and wise reply in this thread re: hedgehog death.
    We know they are wild animals: nature will have it’s way but it’s a declining population, and they are such entrancing creatures so I think we feel each loss dearly.
    The best I can wish for you is heaps of poo on your patio again soon! ๐Ÿ™‚
    Sending support,
    Celeste x

Viewing 10 posts - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.